Are you wondering whether or not YouTube creators are able to see who has viewed their videos?
Or, perhaps you’re a creator yourself, and you’re wondering if there’s any way to see your viewer list.
This is an excellent question. In this article, I’ll be sharing whether or not it’s possible and if so, how it can be done.
Let’s get into it!
Can YouTube Creators See Who Viewed Their Videos?
Currently, the answer is no. There is no way for YouTube publishers to see a complete list of who has viewed their videos.
This is something people have been asking about for a while, and it’s unlikely that YouTube is going to change this anytime soon.
That being said, it is still possible for communities to develop on YouTube, and discover some of the people viewing your videos through certain features, such as the commenting and subscribing system.
We’ll talk more about exactly how creators can find out some of the people who are viewing their videos a little later on.
First, let’s discuss why YouTube hides this information in the first place!
Why Doesn’t YouTube Let Creators See Who’s Viewing Their Content?
Since so many creators would like to see who is viewing their videos, it begs the question – why doesn’t YouTube allow this? Why keep this information hidden in the first place?
Ultimately, it comes down to privacy.
YouTube wants people to be able to freely view the videos they would enjoy, without the fear of being judged by others – even if it’s a random creator they don’t know.
Some videos are about sensitive topics, that we wouldn’t search for in front of our friends or family. From niche interests to health information, this isn’t something many people would feel comfortable being shared.
Not only could this lead to people watching less videos, but it could even be used against them if creators wanted to take advantage of this information.
Besides, although knowing who views your content is interesting, there is no real practical benefit to seeing your entire viewer list – it’s not as if you could reach out to them anyway!
So, it makes a lot of sense why YouTube has chosen to hide it – ultimately, it’s much more comfortable for viewers knowing they can watch whatever they’d like, anonymous to anyone else on the platform.
Here’s When YouTubers CAN See Their Viewers
As mentioned earlier, there are some cases when YouTubers may be able to see a limited portion of their audience.
Let’s briefly look over each situation now!
This one is the obvious one.
Currently, there is no way to comment on a video without actually clicking through to watch it. While creators won’t know how much of the video a specific commenter watched, we do know that they at least landed on the video watch page.
Unlike views, commenters know that their accounts will be shown when they leave a comment, so this isn’t really a privacy issue.
Commenters often represent a creator’s most engaged audience segment. So, if you are a creator and you want to see who viewed your video for the purpose of data collection and audience insights, visiting the pages of your commenters can be a good idea!
2. Subscribers + Analytics
In some – but not all cases, YouTube will let you see who has subscribed to your channel.
In order for this to happen, the person who subscribed must have a privacy setting enabled that allows their subscription list to be publicly viewable on their page.
If this is the case, YouTube will send you a notification or even an email letting you know who it was that subscribed!
So, how does this tie into viewers?
Well, if a YouTuber has a small audience, they can visit YouTube Creator Studio, and see which one of their videos received a new subscriber, on that specific day.
This can show you that a specific subscriber watched a specific video! Again, while a creator can only see a small percentage of their viewers this way, it’s still a neat little workaround.
3. Moving Viewers Off YouTube
Finally, the last – and perhaps the most powerful way to see who your audience really is, is to move them off of YouTube.
Creators often do this in a few ways:
- They get them to join a private community, such as a Discord server based around their channel.
- They get them to sign up for an email newsletter.
- They get them to follow them on another social media platform, like Instagram or Twitter.
Once you are following or interacting with a YouTuber outside of YouTube, the privacy protections put in place by YouTube are no longer there.
This means that creators can often see a full list of who has followed them off YouTube, which may or may not be a problem to you.
YouTube does not allow creators to see a list of who has viewed their videos.
However, YouTubers can still see who has left comments, as well as if you’ve subscribed to them, if your subscriptions are public.
I hope that you’ve found this article helpful, and that it’s answered all of your questions.
If you have any other questions about YouTube, please ask them below and I’ll be happy to respond.
Wishing you the best,
– James McAllister